I was glancing over the political blogs I follow, trying to figure out what the Democrats are going to do now that the GOP has said tax breaks for the rich and mighty are more important than the world's economy and are threatening to let the US default on its debts as of August 2nd, and I'm finding people still fighting over the 2000 election. And still blaming the loss on Nader in Florida! That's ridiculous.
Just to make it clear --
1. Gore ran a crap campaign. I said at the time it looked like he wanted to lose, he was doing so badly at it with his whole "I'm one of you" comments. On top of that was his distancing himself from Clinton and his near refusal to really go after Bush on his weaknesses -- for example, him being a businessman who couldn't find oil in Texas, him really being an Ivy League brat, his deplorable actions in the Texas Air National Guard. Hell, Gore did so poorly, he didn't even carry his home state. He did not want to win.
2. Florida threw 40,000+ voters' names off the registration lists because their names "seemed similar" to convicted felons' names. Not that they WERE, but only that they seemed like a criminal's name. And 90% of them were minorities, who normally vote Democrat. Of course, all of them were restored...after the election.
3. Florida's deliberately confusing butterfly ballot gave Pat Robertson, as anti-Semitic a politician as one can be without being called a Nazi, more votes in the Jewish districts than Nader got. Even Robertson said that was ridiculous.
4. On the occasions where people realized they'd made a mistake and asked to correct it, they were told they couldn't, in direct violation of state law. Florida allows for a provisional ballot to be cast when one is made in error, and those are to be counted if no challenges are brought against them. Poll workers ignored this and told people tough shit. Not one was prosecuted for breaking the law.
5. The Supreme Court stepped in to settle the matter, in direct violation of the Constitution, and anointed Bush as President by a slim majority. The Constitution allows for the House of Representatives to settle controversial presidential elections by vote in their chambers. At the time, the GOP controlled the House, so Bush probably would still have been President, so this point may be moot. But it was still a massive violation of the laws and procedures this country was founded upon.
6. And this was in spite of the fact that Gore won the popular vote by more than five hundred-thousand.
Yet when I tell people that I voted for Nader in 2000, they tell me I helped put Bush in office. What they don't expect me to do is snap back that Gore did that, himself. We had a still booming economy (though is was slowing down and the tech bubble was beginning to hurt) and tens of millions of jobs had been added, and on top of it, we were paying DOWN the US debt. This should have been a cakewalk for Gore, but he blew it. And I think deliberately.
Besides, I voted in California and Gore carried that state.
So now? Now the GOP is out to crush America's democracy and people are just beginning to wake up to how insane they've become in their single-mindedness...and all I can find is how our so-called Commander in Chief still wants to kiss their ass. And he's the only guy the Dems will run for president in 2012. It's sickening.
I must be feeling better; I'm not depressed by this -- I'm pissed off.